Harmandeep Singh Anand, Managing Director, Global Panorama Showcase (GPS), says that the second wave of COVID-19 made them realise that a majority of agents had been affected and many had got into hibernation. This made them take all possible steps to connect, empower and motivate the industry, thus initiate several measures.
Talking about his latest initiative, GPS Connect, Harmandeep Singh Anand says that the platform is based on an ongoing subscription model where buyers and sellers can meet to understand each other’s products and services. “It’s like a more organised virtual marketplace, which we launched in the first week of May. We have been at the forefront of connecting, empowering and motivating the travel industry over the years. It is not only the tier-II and tier-III markets, we are also targeting tier-IV and tier-V cities as well as tour operators across India with GPS Connect. We realised that due to the second wave, 65-70 per cent agents were hugely impacted, so we started revisiting the database, connecting with the fraternity, and found out that there was a huge gap in the number of agents that existed and those that had gone into hibernation. We are expecting business to start picking pace in the last quarter of this year or early next year. Over 200 agents have so far registered for GPS Connect,” he said.
GPS Physical 2022
Moving forward, the GPS team is planning to resume its flagship city-based buyer-seller networking exhibition. Sharing details, Singh said, “By the end of this year or early next year, we are planning to organise the GPS physical exhibition, starting with GPS Nagpur. Within GPS, we have started appointing our representative partners across all states and Union Territories, wherein we have an exclusive partner club where our partners will be able to represent and market all the products and services that GPS is bringing to its fold for the trade. We have till now appointed one partner each in four states and looking forward to enrol more partners. We are working continuously to bring business back to normalcy and get the trade to interact, network, work together and take the industry forward in the best possible manner. Every solution GPS brings is to empower the fraternity.”
GPS has partnered with Oyo Hotels and Homes, and has been appointed as GSA in specific markets to service travel partners and corporates. “Oyo has a huge inventory of more than 11,000 properties across the globe. We have partnered with them for four states – Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Gujarat. Our team will assist all travel agents to on-board on to the OYO Super Agent portal and service them with immediate effect,” Anand revealed.
He also said that the GPS team is working with some New Distribution Capability (NDC) aggregators, where several airlines can be brought on to a single tool in a cost-effective manner. “This can be the solution, and change the way the airline industry has been working for over 30 years now,” Anand commented.
Mantra in a pandemic
Sharing his message for the travel trade, Anand said, “If we look at the current situation, it is revival amidst survival. You have to revive your business while you are surviving. You have to adopt the technology, you have to evolve, and you have to come out of your shell and change what you were doing in the past. I personally feel that if people start evolving, they will definitively excel.”